Every year brings the usual question of, “What do I get them for Christmas?” The question doesn’t change if you are a Christian or a Non-Christian. We live at a time where very few people really need the things we used to get for Christmas. So what are some of the good Christmas gifts we can give that people desperately want?
1. Your Undivided Attention. I honestly believe this is the greatest gift we can give anyone in 2016. Take your spouse out to eat. Take your kids to a park. Stop and visit with an old friend. Before you do those activities take a minute and shut your phone off. That’s right, off. Don’t silence it and still feel the buzz of other people trying to break into your time. An hour or two of undistracted time is a great gift.
2. A Handwritten Letter. (Okay, if your penmanship is terrible, use a computer). This could come in a Christmas card, but space is limited. Take the time to put your thoughts into a long letter and don’t make it a form letter. In a world of one line texts take the time to express yourself deeply. This is a great gift for people who live far away from you.
3. Service. I am sure you know someone who could use a helping hand. Maybe that means watching their kids so they can go Christmas shopping without charging them. Maybe that means you help a young mother get her house clean. This may be very labor intensive, or it might be a hand to someone who is failing. Help someone out.
4. Take a Child for Something. Obviously, you need the parents’ permission. Once you have secured the opportunity, you can do almost anything. You can take the kid anywhere and show them your world. As a parent, I have limited resources and knowledge, and I would love for people to expand my children’s world through their life. Show them how to do something, teach them a skill, play a game with them, take them somewhere and give them an opportunity they would never have otherwise.
5. Enter My World. I know I have a lot of passions and interests. I love, love to talk about what interests me. I think this is true for most people. Some people are passionate about sports, others about racing, others about cooking and the list goes on and on. These are easy to spot when you mention a topic and the other person lights up and quickly beings to talk. Who wouldn’t love an hour of sharing their greatest passion with someone who truly acts interested?
6. Make a Memory. Most people have little need of anything. They do long for connection. Having an experience together can be one of the greatest gifts in the world. Go to a game, watch a movie together or do anything you enjoy. Please remember number 1 if possible.
The great thing about these gifts is that they are free. Well, free is a tricky word. They will cost you time and for most of us, our time is more valuable than money. I think that is what makes these great gifts.